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Publisher's Summary

Sweeping and lyrical, spellbinding and unforgettable, David Ebershoff's The 19th Wife combines epic historical fiction with a modern murder mystery to create a brilliant novel of literary suspense. It is 1875, and Ann Eliza Young has recently separated from her powerful husband, Brigham Young, prophet and leader of the Mormon Church. Expelled and an outcast, Ann Eliza embarks on a crusade to end polygamy in the United States. A rich account of a family's polygamous history is revealed, including how a young woman became a plural wife.
Soon after Ann Eliza's story begins, a second exquisite narrative unfolds - a tale of murder involving a polygamist family in present-day Utah. Jordan Scott, a young man who was thrown out of his fundamentalist sect years earlier, must reenter the world that cast him aside in order to discover the truth behind his father's death.
As Ann Eliza's narrative intertwines with that of Jordan's search, listeners are pulled deeper into the mysteries of love and faith.
©2008 David Ebershoff (P)2008 Random House, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Kimberly on 01-08-10

Good history, a little confusing

Well at first I got a little lost when the novel switched views. Eventually I caught on and it went much more smoothly. What you have to realize is this is not only written in two different perspectives, though it only tells two stories.
First is the authors fictional story about a boy who was kicked out of a modern day polygamous society that returns when his mother is accused of killing his father.
Next is the story of the historical Anne Eliza Young (and her family) who was the 19th (well more like 50th) wife of the mormon prophet Brigham Young. Her story is told through her memoir as well as other documents such as her brothers journal, a students thesis paper, documents from the mormon church's records, etc.
This book is pretty good with great historical facts. I feel like I know a lot more about the roots of the mormon church and polygamy. Be forewarned though it is pretty sad and just as you get into one story it will switch perspectives on you!

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11 of 11 people found this review helpful

By Mary on 11-18-09

The 19th Wife

I loved this book! My favorite genre is historical fiction and I did not know a lot about the history of the Mormon religion before I read (listened to) this book. It makes me want to learn more. I have been telling everyone to read (or listen to) it. One of my friends started reading it and said she was having a hard time switching between the different narrators. I told her that listening to it probably helped with that because the different voices eliminate confusion when the narrator changes.

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9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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